Blood Theatre aka Movie House Massacre – USA, 1984

‘Who will survive opening night?’

Blood Theatre – aka Blood Theater and Movie House Massacre – is a 1984 American comedy horror feature film written and directed by Rick Sloane (Hobgoblins and Hobgoblins 2). The movie stars Mary Woronov, Jenny Cunningham, Jonathan Blakely, Andrew Cofrin and Joanna Foxx.

The film includes many bizarre movie house related deaths, such as being fried inside a popcorn machine, stabbed in the ticket booth, electrocuted by a film projector, decapitated by a projection booth partition, stabbed while a movie is playing on screen, smoke inhalation from burning film and a telephone receiver which breaks apart while a dying girl screams hysterically into it.

Reviews:

“Visually this film far exceeds expectations and the murder set pieces are well executed. Without a doubt, when it comes to Z Garde cinema performances are the area where these films suffer the most. Fortunately, when it comes to performances, all is not lost for this film. With it’s greatest asset being Mary Woronov (Sugar CookiesEating Raoul)…” Michael Den Boer, 10K Bullets

“Inexperience powers most of the picture, which offers pronounced parody and criticism of the burgeoning multiplex environment of theatrical exhibition, but fails mightily whenever Sloane gets around to arranging murder set pieces. Blood Theater has a lot of issues, a lack of coherency being a major problem…” Brian Orndorf, Blu-ray.com

Blood Theatre clocks in at a scant 75 minutes, but it feels like much longer. It could benefit from cutting about 30 minutes of filler to make a decent slasher short, but the picture would still be painfully slow even if the pacing weren’t hampered by irrelevant subplots.” Alex DiVincenzo, Broke Horror Fan

” …if you appreciate incredibly ‘80s hair and clothes, and the uniquely bizarre, very intentional humor of director Rick Sloane (Hobgoblins; the Vice Academy series), there is much here that will warm your heart.” Chiller

” …it’s painfully bad, with some of the most uninspired killings you’ll ever witness in a slasher film. The pacing, dialogue and acting (not one likable character in the whole show) are also horrid and not even cult icon Mary Woronov (as a very stuck-up secretary) or lame attempts at film-within-a-film humor (Clown Whores of Hollywood, yikes!) can save this turkey.” George R. Reis, DVD Drive-In

” …one schizophrenic little cheapie. Rare is the film that fails so resoundingly in two separate genres at the exact same time.” Scott Weinberg, e-FilmCritic.com

“People wander into the cinema and get killed – that’s about the size of it. This geriatric in a tuxedo waddles up to them and stabs them bloodlessly when they aren’t looking- rarely does it get anymore adventurous than that. Yep, the film has no special fx -apart from perhaps the worst decapitation ever committed to celluloid; and maybe half a bottle of ketchup.” Hysteria Lives!

“A truly baffling experience, Blood Theatre is completely ineffective as a horror film (even the gore disappears almost entirely after the opener) and is approached as an impoverished spoof that appears to have been largely improvised during filming and even in the editing room. The exact nature of the threat is fuzzy to say the least, but there’s a lot of amusement to be had in both the tacky nature of the, ahem, “production design” and the silly performances…” Nathaniel Thompson, Mondo Digital

“This bonafide bore is 100% incompetent and yields no surprises; one by one the cast deliver a lifeless performance (especially lead dud Darcy as Tonya Harding lookalike Jennifer). There’s some truly enthusiastic overacting by the bitchy Selena, which manages a titter here and there. But otherwise all but the most adventurous should probably avoid this flaccid (and basically bloodless) drivel.” The Terror Trap

” …Movie House Massacre is incredibly inept. Only the presence of veteran low-budget star Mary Woronov, as the manager’s assistant, makes this film even remotely tolerable.” TV Guide

” …this is an almost stunningly dreadful film with awful acting, set pieces, no apparent story and a horrible plinky-plonky score.” Vegan Voorhees

Cast and characters:

  • Mary Woronov as Miss Blackwell – Chopping Mall; TerrorVision; Death Race 2000; Silent Night, Bloody Night
  • Jenny Cunningham as Jennifer / Ellen
  • Jonathan Blakely as Original Owner
  • Andrew Cofrin as Adrian
  • Joanna Foxx as Selena
  • Stephanie Dillard as Darcy
  • Rob-Roy Fletcher as Dean Murdock
  • Daniel Schafer as Malcolm
  • Cynthia Hartline as Jamie Hart
  • Lisa Lindsley as Lisa
  • Joni Barnes as Dee-Dee
  • Carl Bressler as Pimp
  • Troy Martin as Pie Victim
  • Tony Goldman as Police Officer
  • Paul Schubin as Police Officer
  • Bruce Nangle as Ellen’s Lover
  • Barrie Metz as Multiplex Employee
  • David Millbern as Original Owner (Younger)

Filming locations:

The majority of the movie was shot at the historic Beverly Warner Theater in Beverly Hills. It was later demolished and the site became a bank building.

Running time:

75 minutes

Trivia:

All the movies that play at the Spotlite Theater Multiplex in this film, were short films made by Rick Sloane while he attended Los Angeles City College. They include Clown Whores of HollywoodChainsaw ChicksAmputee Hookers and Nightmare of the Lost Whores.

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